Decal Plates


If you’ve got stacks of old crockery that’s starting to look la little dates, tart it up in a flash with easy-to-use DIY transfers


You will need –

  • A selection of old china
  • An inkjet printer
  • Waterslide decal paper, 79p per sheer
  • Copyright free images
  • Small scissors or scalpel



  1. First, choose your favourite images, and print them onto waterslide decal paper.
  2. Use a scalpel or a small pair of scissors to cut out the images, then use Blu-Tack to temporarily attach them to the china in a composition you’re most happy with.
  3. One image at a time, peel backing away to reveal the tacky side, stick in place and leave to dry completely.





Marbled Notebooks

These inexpensive books have had a makeover using a very simple but effective technique -marbling


You will need

Flat tray, large enough to fit the paper ,in which to do the marbling.

Marbling inks

Copper coloured Spray paint

Masking tape

Lolly or cocktail stick

Lots of newspaper

Kitchen roll


Instructions to marble paper

  1. Cover the work area with lots of newspaper. Fill the tray with 3cm of water.
  2. Prime the surface of the water by putting a drop of marbling ink onto the surface of the water. Wipe it away with some kitchen paper.
  3. Using the dropper bottle apply 1 or 2 drops of marbling ink onto the surface of the water. Either bow it or give it a quick stir with a stick or back of a paint brush.
  4. Place a piece of paper on top of the water and inks and then lift it off. The design will be on your paper.
  5. Leave the sheet to dry. You can try a second print but it will probably come out lighter than the first.
  6. Add more drops of ink and repeat steps 3 and 4
  7. Remove excess ink from the surface of the water with a scrap of paper.


Instructions to cover a book

  1. Open the book at about its middle and then lightly cover the spine with masking tape.
  2. In an open area spray the spine with copper spray paint. Leave to dry. Make sure, where it will be visable that the inside of the spine is also sprayed.
  3. When it is dry remove the masking tape.
  4. Cut the paper so it covers 1 side of the outside of the book, but leaving the spine showing, with an overlap of 4cm
  5. Fold to make it fit and cut away the corner. Repeat for the back of the book.
  6. Using PVA glue stick the marbled paper onto the front outside of the book and the over lap on the back of the covers. Repeat for the back of the book.

Tip Wear disposable latex gloves for the whole project, as it makes it much less mucky.


Dip Dyed Plates

With some plain white china, emulsion and masking tape you can create designer plates for next to nothing. Please note these are purely decorative and cannot be used for eating from or put in a dishwasher.

You will need some white China we used Ikea 365 costs £2 for a large plate and £1 for a small one, Crown paints match pot s£1.49 for 40ml we used the following colours: Blue Planet, Scrumptious,Orange Squash, Up beat, Shocking pink, Hot mustard.

Masking tape and a car sponge.

Stick the masking tape across the paint to make a line of where you want the colour to finish. Dip the sponge into the emulsion, and using an up and down motion, cover the area where you want to add colour. Build up in layers and leave to dry before removing the masking tape.

Tip If you get smudges when you remove the tape, use a scalpel blade to remove the excess paint.




Decoupaged Hand Plates


Who’d of thought charity shop find vintage plates could so easily be transformed into such elegant wall art. A really simple project, you will need an inkjet printer to make the transfer images. We found these gorgeous copyright free eighteenth century wood engraving designs for teaching hand language.

You will need

Charity shop plates

Inkjet Water slide decal pack clear


Acrylic spray

Copy right free images


Instructions –

  1. Select the images you want to use. Print them out in a variety of sizes, cut out using scissors then try them for size on the plates.

2. Follow the manufacturer instructions print the images onto decal paper, then spray with acrylic varnish. Apply a couple of coats covering the printing completely to seal, so it doesn’t break up in the water.

3. When the images are completely dry, cut out with scissors keeping close to the edge of the design. To help the images slide onto the plates sponge on a thin layer of water. Put the paper backed image into a bowl of warm water, leave for about 30 secs. Lift the edge of the image off one corner of the paper. Hold the image over the plate, gently curl the backing paper away and slide the image onto the plate. Use the sponge to pat out any bubbles or wrinkles in the image.

4. Leave til dry then mount in place on the wall using Command strips


Inkjet Water Slide Decal Pack clear: Specialist crafts LTD

Command Strip http:


Ladder Christmas Tree



We made our picture perfect tree out
of an old ladder with near-on zero prep, using a coat of chalk paint to cover ancient paint drips and to create a matte finish.


You will need-

  • Planed timber
  • Saw
  • Spirit level
  • Pencil
  • Drill
  • Screws
  • Crown Cloudburst matt emulsion paint, £11.99 for 2.5l, Maxwells DIY
  • Polyvine Chalk Paint Maker,  £11.36, Amazon
  • Paintbrush


1. Put up the ladder and decide how steep you want the sides of the tree to be; you might have to remove the retaining cord. Ours is quite broad as we wanted to max out on the display area.


2. To make the back leg shelf supports, cut batten from 2.5cm x 5cm planed timber.With the spirit level balanced on the front step, extend the level line and mark where to locate the support batten on the back legs with pencil. Screw the battens in place.


3. Our shelves projected 25cm beyond the edge of the step to give extra display space, but you could make yours shorter if you’d like. Decide on the length, then cut each shelf from planed wood. Screw in place on the front steps and back batten.
4. To make the chalk paint, mix 400ml Crown Cloudburst Matt Emulsion with 200ml Polyvine Chalk Paint Maker. Then, with a crosshatch strokes, paint the ladder Christmas tree and let dry before decorating.

homestyle-makes-4-23 homestyle-makes-4-24

Hygge Patchwork Throw

What could be more Hygge than a throw made out of vintage faded softened men’s shirts. This one has been made from a collection of blue, striped, plains, checked fabrics cut into rectangles that are surrounded by red checks and tartans cut into strips. To complete the recycled aspect to this project, it is backed with an old sheet. The inside is curtain interfacing but you could equally well use an old duvet or wadding.

Note This throw can be made for any sized throw or quilt you wish to make from a baby’s to a king sized quilt and anything between. The only limitation is the size of the backing sheet as this needs to be as large as the front of the quilt.

You will need

Pile of old shirts the number will depend on the size of coverlet you wish to make.

Fabric Scissors

Sewing machine and thread

Dress -makers pins

Steam iron

Old sheet

Interling or wadding



  1. Cut the blue coloured shirts into equal height rectangles and arrange them side by side and on top of one another as if making a brick wall.
  1. Cut the red check and tartan shirts into approximately 5cm wide strips some the same height as the blue rectangles. Other can be the full length of the shirt. Turn the sides in by about 0.5cm as if making bias binding, press flat with a steam iron.
  1. With right sides together, sew one side of one strip to one rectangle. Sew a different rectangle onto the other side of the strip. Press flat. Repeat this process until you have the width of fabric that you need.
  1. Join long strips of red check to the top and bottom of the long piece of fabric you just created. Repeat until the fabric is the size you require.
  1. Make a fabric sandwich, with right sides facing outwards and the sheet on the bottom the wadding in the center, and the new fabric, just created, on the top. Pin, tack and then sew round the edge.
  1. Edge the whole of the throw with another long piece of tartan strip.

Rug supplied by Flair Rugs –


Hygge – Fingerless Mittens

This is a very simple, inexpensive yet luxurious make and epitomizes the spirit of Hygge. We used a much loved but rather moth eaten cashmere sweater to create these mittens. We covered the holes with beautiful old nametapes, which were a thrift store find. They are perfect as they have bound edges so are easy to sew on. If you don’t have nametapes you can always use pieces of ribbon. Tapestry wool is perfect for sewing the mittens as it comes in many colours so you can either make a near perfect match or give an injection of colour. Tapestry wool is thick, so before sewing with it separate out a couple strands from a length of wool.

You will need

Old sweater or cardigan with sleeves

Contrast or matching wool

Name tapes or ribbon for mending

Darning needle

Sewing needle


Sewing thread

Stitch unpicker

Dress makers pins


  1. Cut the sleeves off the sweater and try them on. You will want them to be a bit crinkly when you wear them so that they trap air and keep you very warm. If they are too long cut some of the length off but leave enough to turn the edge under to neaten.
  2. Put each sleeve on and mark thumbs position with pins on the side seam.
  3. Using the stitch unpicker, remove the stitches in the side seam at the thumb position.
  4. Roll in the edges of the thumb holes and sew down to neaten.
  5. If the sweater fabric is felted you won’t need to neaten the cut edges, if it is fraying roll in the edges and neaten like the thumb holes.
  6. Use nametags to cover any moth holes, sew in place using a needle and sewing thread.

Enjoy wearing your newly made Hygge mittens!

Get your copy of The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking here!

Or here (


Upcycled Autumn Blanket

With the nights drawing in and the weather getting colder why not make a throw from an old blanket?

We made ours from a single pale green blanket that had seen better days. It was a bit stained and holey so we decided to dye it and appliqué leaves over the holes. Cath Kidston have some great leafy fabric this season so we used their leaves for the appliqué and another of their fabrics to make a bound edge.

You will need

1 blanket

Dylon Machine dye in forest green

1m of Cath Kidston woodland fabric and 1m of woodland rose cotton duck Fabric to make. bias binding

2packets of fusible webbing


Dressmakers pins


Korbond water erasable  pen

Dressmakers tape

Dressmakers scissors


Sewing machine


  1. Following instructions on the packet to dye the blanket. It will felt it slightly too.  Leave blanket to dry.
  2. Iron bondaweb onto the back of the leafy fabric. Cut out the leaves. Peel off the backing paper.
  3. Pin the first leaves so they cover any holes. Arrange other leaves evenly over the blanket.
  4. Iron each leaf in place. Check you have removed all the pins, then sew each leaf onto the blanket.
  5. Cut  the bound strip off each end of the blanket.
  6. Fold the Contrast fabric on the cross and measure a depth of 5cm. Draw a straight line and cut lengths of bias.
  7. Sew the bias strip round the blanket first on one side and then fold over onto the other side of the blanket and we it. Note you will have to ease round the corners of the blanket to fit the bias evenly.



Wire Shelf from a Bread Crate

We had an old wire bread basket that was just calling out for a bit of a makeover, so we turned it on its side and fitted some shelves made from oddments of wood.

They were not just any old shelves, We painted them, in your face, neon pink before fitting them. So the whole unit has a real Wow factor to it.

You will need

Metal bread or milk crate

Soft wood off cuts

Steel ruler



Drill with small drill bit

Thin Wire

Wire cutters

Valspar Fluorescent paint in pink



  1. Measure the wood off cuts and mark so they are the same dimensions as the inside of the metal crate from front to back and side to side.
  2. Saw the wood to those dimensions.
  3. Make sure the shelves fit into the crate. With a pencil mark on the wood where the various uprights are at the back and the sides of the crate. Drill holes in the shelves in the positions you marked.
  4. Sand the shelves. In a well -ventilated room ,spray in turn the tops side and underneath of each shelf it turn obviously drying between the various sides before applying the next coat. .
  5. Cut the wire into 15cm pieces and thread through the shelves and then using the metal ties, tie each shelf into the frame.



Tote Bag Cushions

Create your own stylish cushions from freebie tote bags. We go to loads and press and design shows, so we end up collection loads of these awesome bags. Typography is still very much on trend so cushions with logos on them look great!


You will need:

  • Calico bags
  • Old cushions pads
  • Pins, needles and threads
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Iron and ironing board



  1. Most bags are oblong in shape and most cushions pads are square so you will need to cut off the top of the bag., along with the handles.
  2. Measure the wisth of the bag and the bottom corner of the bag to the top, adding a 1cm deam allowance. Draw a line to mark where you will need to cut.
  3. Cut off the surplus fabric at the top of the bag. Press the bag flat.
  4. Stuff the old cushion pad into the cover, making sure that the corners of the pad are pushed into the corners of the cover. Fold in the open edges by 1cm and pin them.
  5. Sew the opening closed with a slip stitch or a hemming stitch.

Rug supplied by Flair Rugs –